Inquiry Unit:How Do Our Taste Buds Work?


How do our taste buds work? This question has been underlying our current inquiry and we have been wondering how they actually work. Exploring our own tongues through pictures this week, we noticed a similarity between them in particular ways. To take this even further, the next step within our inquiry will be asking students how to find out the information from their questions, using our inquiry tool box. The children will be encouraged to use the Inquiry Toolbox to inquire into how to find the answers to their questions.

The Inquiry Toolbox is a box that has different ways of finding out the answers, such as ask an expert, research it, look at books, use the internet, phone someone, ask your teachers and so forth. The purpose of the Inquiry Toolbox is to allow the child different means and methods of finding out answers to their questions.

At a very young age, infants and children naturally begin the process of learning through a practice known as inquiry. They have a spontaneous desire for exploration. They gather information and data through applying the human senses – seeing, hearing, touching, tasting and smelling. However, some traditional forms of teaching discourage the natural process of inquiry. When these approaches are used, as students grow older, they may become less willing to ask questions. Too often they are only called upon to repeat the expected answer.

In our Pre-School, the inquiry process will be extended as children move from noticing and wondering about objects and events to exploring, observing and questioning in a more focused way. As they gather and examine information they are then provided with opportunities to compare, sort, classify and interpret their observations.

We believe that inquiry is a critical building block in the process of learning. Inquiry places emphasis on the development of inquiry skills and attitudes that will enable individuals to continue the quest for knowledge as one gets older and throughout life.